One of the wonderful things about being mobile is being able to live near friends all over the country. We’re just beginning to grasp the excitement of this new reality. While visiting the Badlands, our friends, Leslie and Kenny, messaged us saying they were just a few hours away and would love to visit us – with their camper! We quickly arranged for them to have the spot next to us and awaited their arrival.
After a fun night of catching up, we set off for the Badlands.
Being the fun-loving couple they are, the adventure didn’t end there. Just beyond the Badlands Park is the Prairie Homestead. Built in 1909, the home of Mr. and Mrs. Ed Brown is one of the only surviving sod homes of the era. The sod house and out-buildings have been restored and set up to give the you feel of actually being back in time. You can touch everything on the grounds and get a real feel for what life here might have been like for the early homesteaders. And best of all, they supply period clothing for visitors to dress up in! Armed with cameras, we set off to go back in time.
After lunch, we decided to head over to a small town called Scenic. While there are a few occupied houses, and a corner store, the town has numerous abandoned buildings.
The town of Scenic did indeed have the feel of a ghost town. Many of the buildings had been updated with electricity and used well into the latter half of the 20th century, but had long since been boarded up. Without any historical signs or information, it was unclear how much of the old town was original vs. newer construction, made to appear older. One of the most fascinating things we saw was this open-air jail, with two cells to hold offenders. After getting a close look at the heavy door latches, it was plain to see why they call it the slammer. The town has a colorful history documented here if you’re interested in reading more about it.
Tomorrow: Rapid City, SD.